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Home > Dictionary of Science Quotations > Scientist Names Index D > Emil DuBois-Reymond Quotes

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Emil DuBois-Reymond
(7 Nov 1818 - 26 Dec 1896)

German physiologist.


Science Quotes by Emil DuBois-Reymond (2 quotes)

Fundamentally, as is readily seen, there exists neither force nor matter. Both are abstractions of things, such as they are, looked at from different standpoints. They complete and presuppose each other. Isolated they are meaningless. … Matter is not a go-cart, to and from which force, like a horse, can be now harnessed, now loosed. A particle of iron is and remains exactly the same thing, whether it shoot through space as a meteoric stone, dash along on the tire of an engine-wheel, or roll in a blood-corpuscle through the veins of a poet. … Its properties are eternal, unchangeable, untransferable.
— Emil DuBois-Reymond
From the original German text in 'Über die Lebenskraft', Preface to Untersuchungen über tierische Elektrizität (1848), xliii. As translated in Ludwig Büchner, Force and Matter: Or, Principles of the Natural Order of the Universe (1891), 1.
Science quotes on:  |  Abstraction (48)  |  Blood (142)  |  Both (494)  |  Complete (208)  |  Corpuscle (14)  |  Different (581)  |  Engine (98)  |  Eternal (112)  |  Exist (447)  |  Existence (475)  |  Force (493)  |  Force And Matter (3)  |  Harness (23)  |  Horse (77)  |  Iron (98)  |  Isolation (32)  |  Look (581)  |  Matter (810)  |  Meaningless (17)  |  Meteor (18)  |  Other (2233)  |  Particle (200)  |  Poet (94)  |  Presuppose (15)  |  Property (171)  |  Remain (352)  |  Roll (40)  |  Space (510)  |  Standpoint (28)  |  Stone (167)  |  Thing (1914)  |  Through (846)  |  Unchangeable (11)  |  Vein (25)  |  Wagon (9)  |  Wheel (51)

The history of science is the real history of mankind.
— Emil DuBois-Reymond
As given, without source citation, as an epigraph opening W.T. Sedgwick, and H.W. Tyler, A Short History of Science (1917), ii. The quote is no doubt a translation from an original in German, which Webmaster has not yet been able to track down.
Science quotes on:  |  History (694)  |  History Of Mankind (14)  |  History Of Science (80)  |  Mankind (351)  |  Real (156)


See also:
  • 7 Nov - short biography, births, deaths and events on date of DuBois-Reymond's birth.

Carl Sagan Thumbnail In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion. (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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